Composix Kugel Mesh Trial Updates

On July 6, 2011, Motley Rice announced that C.R. Bard, Inc., negotiated with more than 100 law firms from across the country and extended settlement offers totaling an estimated $184 million in approximately 2,600 lawsuits filed due to severe medical complications such as bowel perforation, sepsis, intestinal fistulas and abdominal abscess formation allegedly caused by the company's Composix® Kugel®  Mesh hernia patch. Multiple ring break and ring buckle cases were scheduled for trial at the time of this resolution, eight of which Motley Rice was litigating in state and federal courts. Motley Rice represents clients in approximately 1,100 of the resolved claims and will provide updates to these clients on the progress of the settlement claims process, which will take several months to finalize.

On Feb. 4, 2011, Judge Lisi denied a bid by Davol and C.R. Bard for a new trial in the Thorpe case. In addition to denying the motion for a new trial, Judge Lisi also denied the defendants' request to exclude the  medical expert testimony from the April trial, stating it was "undoubtedly helpful in assisting the jury" to understand the facts. The next two trials in the federal Composix Kugel Mesh hernia patch multidistrict litigation have been scheduled for 2011. The first case is scheduled to begin in late April 2011, and the second is scheduled to begin in July 2011. These cases mark the third and fourth cases selected for the early bellwether trials in the MDL. In addition to the bellwether trials in the federal MDL, the first two hernia patch trials of the hundreds that were centralized in Rhode Island State Court have been scheduled to begin in February and Spring of 2011 before Presiding Justice Alice B. Gibney.

On Monday, Aug. 23, 2010, a jury in the U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island awarded $1.3 million in personal injury damages and another $200,000 for loss of consortium to Christopher and Laure Thorpe in the case Christopher Thorpe and Laure Thorpe v. Davol, Inc. and C.R. Bard Inc., the second case to go to trial against hernia patch manufacturer Davol and parent company C.R. Bard. Both companies were found liable for failing to provide adequate warning or instruction for the hernia repair patch and acting unreasonably in designing the patch.

On Monday, March 29, 2010, the first of more than 3,000 lawsuits against Davol Inc., John Whitfield v. Davol, Inc., et al., went to trial in U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island before Chief Judge Mary M. Lisi, who will also be presiding over any pretrial litigation for federal cases involving similar allegations. The jury in the case found on Sunday, April 18, 2010, that the company was negligent in its design of the Composix Kugel Mesh hernia repair patch, an important development meaning that the product should not have been placed on the market.

In an order filed Sept. 28, 2007, Don Migliori was named the co-lead plaintiffs' counsel  and liaison counsel of MDL No. 07-1842 ML, In re Kugel Mesh Hernia Patch Litigation. This marked the first time in the 40-year history of the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation that cases filed nationwide concerning the same issue were transferred to the U.S. District Court in Providence, RI for pre-trial proceedings.

If you have questions about the Composix Kugel Mesh hernia repair patch litigation, contact medical device lawyers Don Migliori or Leah Donaldson by email or call 1.800.768.4026.